B Moments, service

You Will Be Used in God’s Service

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: Isaiah 43:25 (ESV)

Today, I am thinking about how our prior acts don’t disqualify us.

I am wrapping up the series here about Jesus’ encounter with the Samaritan woman. When we look at this situation, it is important to put things in the proper context. The period in which the beautiful exchange occurs was fraught with severe racial tensions, so the Samaritans and Jews didn’t socialize with each other.

Yet Jesus engages this woman in a beautiful exchange and as they’re talking, out of the blue, Jesus asked her to go and get her husband. The woman had to confess that she didn’t have a husband.

Jesus then said that she was right. The fact of the matter was that she had had five husbands and wasn’t even married to the man with whom she was living.

In that moment, I had to reflect and realize that our prior acts don’t disqualify us from being in a relationship with God and being able to be used in His service. Many times, we hold on to guilt and to the past. We judge ourselves and judge others.

Those are actually the actions that keep us from dwelling in the presence of God.

Let us close our eyes and see our excess baggage floating away. As we do this, let us remember these words: “I am He who blots out your transgressions for my own sake, and I will not remember your sins.” Isaiah 43:25 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, know that your past acts do not disqualify you from being in relationship with God and being used in His service.

B Moment, changes

Be Encouraged: God Knows When Your Heart Changes

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: Psalm 139:2 (ESV)

Today I am thinking about how God knows when your heart changes.

Sometimes, I can be hard on myself when I believe I have fallen short. It’s a classic case of knowing better, yet feeling as though I am not yet doing better. This is something I especially reflected on while reading about Rahab.

I was comforted after reading Rahab’s story because I realized just how much God knows our hearts.

Rahab was a prostitute who lived in Jericho. Before Joshua ultimately conquered Jericho, he sent two spies in advance, and Rahab allowed the spies to hide in her house.

While the spies were there, she talked to them about their God, saying she had heard all about their God of both heaven and Earth.

She talked with them so passionately that it was almost as if she wanted their God to become her God as well.

A month later, Joshua returned to conquer the entire town of Jericho. In the chaos, Rahab and her family were spared.

Hearing this inspired me because not only did God know Rahab’s heart, but He knew when she had a change of heart and began to desire to know Him better.

Therefore, let us be inspired that we serve a God who is intimately aware of us, our hearts, and the actions we may take next. Let us cling to these words: “You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar.” Psalm 139:2 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, be encouraged that God knows when your heart changes even if your actions don’t fully reflect this change just yet.

B Moments, preparing

God Has a Unique Way of Preparing Us

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: Proverbs 3:5 (NIV)

Today, I am thinking about how God has a unique way of preparing us.

Recently, we’ve been talking about how King Saul fell out of grace with God, but God soon anointed David to replace him as king. However, while David was still under Saul’s rule, he told Saul that he believed he could be the one to defeat Goliath. Saul didn’t believe him initially, but David insisted.

Finally, Saul gave in and immediately began to prepare David for battle. Saul’s way of preparing David was by giving him a bronze helmet and a coat of mail, which is a protective garment made of metal rings. He even strapped a sword over David.

David tried these things on for size and walked around for a little while, but he quickly became very uncomfortable. He told Saul that he had never worn such things before and that he couldn’t go to battle in them. He explained to Saul that when he watched over his father’s sheep and a lion or bear came to steal a lamb, he used his hands, clubbing and attacking the animal.

What he was really telling Saul is that he would rather trust the way that God had divinely prepared him for this moment rather than lean on his human understanding with all of the extra armor.

The next time you question the way God might be preparing you to take on a greater assignment, lean on this verse: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.” Proverbs 3:5 (NIV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, go free knowing that every role and assignment you have had has not been random, but is God’s way of preparing you for greater.

B Moments, full circle

Let Your Heart Come Full Circle

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: Ezekiel 11:19 (ESV)

Today, I am thinking about when our hearts come full circle.

We are wrapping up our before and after series of our spiritual growth. We’ve taken a before and after look at how our prayers have evolved over time and how our priorities have shifted.

Now, we are reflecting on when our hearts have been touched and changed for the better, which reminds me of Rahab’s story. Rahab was a prostitute who lived in Jericho. Before Joshua ultimately conquered Jericho, he sent two spies in advance, and Rahab allowed the spies to hide in her house.

While the spies were there, she talked with them about the Lord, saying she had heard all about their God of both heaven and Earth. She talked with them so passionately that it was almost as if she wanted their God to become her God as well.

The heart in Rahab that had once inclined her to sell her body now yearned to be open to explore what God had in store for her. Rahab’s heart had come full circle, and God knew that. A month later, Joshua returned to conquer the entire town of Jericho. In all the chaos, Rahab and her family were spared.

When did you have a closed heart about a situation? Is it open now? Take a moment to celebrate your progress, and let that be confirmation that God is continually working in your life. As you do that, remember these words: “I will remove the heart of stone from their flesh and give them a heart of flesh.” Ezekiel 11:19 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, let your heart come full circle.

B Moments, priorities

Keep Shifting Your Priorities toward God

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: Matthew 6:33 (ESV)

Today, I am thinking about when our priorities shift.

In this series, we’re focusing on our before and after. I’ve used the example of watching HGTV and seeing the before and after images of a remodeled house. The same can be true for our spiritual growth.

Now, I’m focusing on Peter and how his priorities shifted. If you know anything about Peter, you know that he loved fishing. It was in his DNA and was the center of his world. In good times, Peter would happily fish, and when he was down, he would retreat to fishing.

However, I noticed something interesting about this as I was reading in the book of John. One night, Peter and some of the disciples went out fishing. They fished all night, but by morning they had not caught a thing. An unsuccessful fishing trip was a big deal to someone like Peter.

At dawn, Jesus appeared on the shore and told Peter and the disciples to throw their nets on the right side of the boat, and there would be plenty of fish. In fact, there would be so many fish that the nets wouldn’t be able to hold them all.

Yet the moment that Peter saw Christ appear on the shore, the Scriptures say he threw on his tunic, jumped overboard, and swam to shore to join Jesus. In that moment, Peter made it very clear that fish were no longer the most important thing in his life. His priorities had shifted. He had something better: Christ on the shore.

Take a moment to celebrate yourself for shifting your priorities and growing closer to God. As you do so, remember these words: “But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things will be added to you.” Matthew 6:33 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, keep shifting your priorities for the better.

B Moments, mother

Celebrate Mother’s Day Early

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: Proverbs 31:27-28 (ESV)

Today, as a mom, I am in the spirit of celebrating Mother’s Day a little early. I am specifically thinking about the myriad ways a mother loves her child.

Many times, a mother’s love is on display, but sometimes it is invisible or sacrificial. Other times, a mother’s love may seem tough.

As mothers there are times when we see the need to stretch our children by taking them out of their comfort zones. This is when a loving mother is seen as not so loving.

Nonetheless, she must stand her ground and hold true to her child’s growth and purpose. To the child, it can feel like a season of punishment or a season in the wilderness.

However, if we reflect on nature, we know that a tree in the wilderness will stretch its roots deeper in search of water. That is exactly what moms try to do. We try to stretch our children out of their comfort and into their higher self.

When a mom inspires her child to go deeper in order to reach higher, she’s not only impacting her child’s life, but future generations to come.

What mom do you know who shows many expressions of love? Share a story with her of how she has impacted your life, and at the end of your story, share these words with her: “She looks well to the ways of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. Her children rise up and call her blessed.” Proverbs 31:27-28 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, kick off mother’s day early, and acknowledge a mom for her love.

B Moments, teach

You Will Prosper from God’s Teachings

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: Matthew 5:46 (ESV)

Today, I am thinking about all of the ways God will teach us.

In this series, we’ve been talking about the ways God comforts us. One of the ways He does that is by teaching us, specifically by using a host of life scenarios designed to strengthen and educate us.

This reminds me of the way Jesus creatively taught through his parables. One day, he went down to the shore where a great crowd had gathered to see him. The Scriptures say that Jesus got into a boat and from it, taught the people who listened on the shore.

One of the parables Jesus shared was about the wheat and the weed. In the story, a farmer planted good seed in his field, but during the night, an enemy came and planted weeds among the wheat.

As the wheat grew, the weeds grew too, right alongside the wheat. While the first inclination of the servants was to pull the weeds, they had to consider that in doing so, they would harm the wheat. Jesus’ point was that in life, the wheat and the weeds are intended to grow together until God separates them.

Who in your life seems to be the weeds? Their actions and even their presence may not feel so comforting. Yet be comforted in this: God is using them to teach you, to strengthen you, and to draw you closer to Him.

As you think about that, remember these words: “For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same?” Matthew 5:46 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, prosper from His teachings.

B Moment, unfair

Don’t Let the Unfair Stain Your Heart

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: Psalm 139:23-24 (NLT)

Today, I am thinking about what it feels like to endure something that seems unfair.

Oftentimes, when you’re in a situation that seems unfair, you feel as though you can clearly see that one side is wrong, and that the other side, your side, is right. These feelings remind me of the story of Jonah.

God instructed Jonah to preach a revival in the town of Nineveh. However, Jonah didn’t want to preach to the people who lived there because he saw them as unjust. In his eyes, they were too unworthy to hear God’s word, much less be saved by it.

Therefore, Jonah sailed in the opposite direction of Nineveh. Yet God has a way of bringing his children to do what He wants them to do. So Jonah, unsurprisingly, ended up in the town of Nineveh.

In the end, Jonah preached a powerful revival. It was so powerful, in fact, that it turned 120,000 souls to God, and God, in turn, showed mercy on them. Despite thinking that the people of Nineveh should be destroyed because they were the enemy of Israel, Jonah ended up helping guide them to the right path.

Sometimes, when something feels unjust, you might wonder whose side God is on. Yet I think it’s fair to say that God can choose to show mercy to whomever whenever He chooses.

The key is to keep our hearts clean while He’s having mercy on the other side. Don’t let feelings of unfairness turn to bitterness. Instead, let us keep our hearts pure as we cling to these words: “Search me, O God, and know my heart…Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life.” Psalm 139:23-24 (NLT)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, don’t let what seems unfair stain your heart.

B Moments, growing

Move on from What You’ve Outgrown

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: Philippians 3:13-14 (ESV)

Today, I have a question: Are you somewhere you’ve stopped growing?

In this series, we’re talking about being in deeper communion with God. One way of doing this is by choosing our spirit over the desires of our flesh.

Another way to do this is by remaining in an environment where you are stretching yourself and continually growing. I had this thought as I recalled the remarks I heard from Steve Pemberton, the author of A Chance in the World.

If you haven’t heard Steve’s story, it is an amazing story of triumph. He had an incredibly difficult childhood. His mother was an alcoholic, and he was raised in an abusive foster home.

After hearing this heartbreaking tale, someone in the audience asked Steve if there was anything about his life that he would change. Given his difficult childhood, it would be understandable if he wanted to change that.

However, he instead talked about his adult years and said that his only regret in life was staying too long in a place where he had stopped learning and stopped growing.

I thought his statement was extremely profound because we can sometimes become nestled into a place that we’ve already mastered, which means we’re no longer being challenged.

However, when we’re in a place where we’re learning and being challenged, we’re inclined to lean on God for strength and direction, allowing us to go deeper in communion with Him.

Let us cling to these words for strength: “Forgetting what lies behind…I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:13-14 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, move on from a place you’ve outgrown.

B Moments, ego

Favor Your Spirit Rather Than Your Ego

This is our B moment. Our moment to be still…to be fed by the Word of God…to be grateful.

Scripture reference: Proverbs 22:4 (ESV)

Today, I am thinking about the importance of responding to situations through our spirit versus our ego.

In this series, we’ve been talking about those things that draw us into a deeper communion with God. The first way we discussed was by choosing our spirit over the desires of our flesh.

The second thing we talked about was moving on from those environments where we are no longer learning and being challenged. Challenging ourselves ensures we lean on God for strength and direction.

Finally, as we wrap this series up, another way to go deeper is to respond in spirit and not in ego. Christ was the perfect example of how to do this.

Recall that after Jesus fed the 5,000, there were some who showed up the very next day to be fed by Christ again. When Jesus came in contact with them, he told them that they were only there because of what he could do for them, not because of who he was.

However, they began to chant at him, demanding that he become their king. They chanted this at Jesus with clenched fists, passionate down to the last person.

Yet Jesus responded that their chanting was not the way to appeal to him. They were attempting to persuade him using force, and he wouldn’t be swayed by that. He even dismissed their idea of him becoming their king.

Jesus teaches us that when things in the natural realm are playing into our ego, we must reach for those things in the spiritual realm. When we do this, we are able to be in deeper communion with God.

The words that I use to guide myself are: “The reward for humility and fear of the Lord is riches and honor and life.” Proverbs 22:4 (ESV)

Please share this reflection as others desire to be inspired.

So today, respond in spirit rather than in ego.